Femicides in Turkey from March 2021 to March 2022
277 women were killed in Turkey in a year. They were killed in their homes, supposedly their safest spaces, by their intimate partners or other family members...
277 women were killed in Turkey in a year. They were killed in their homes, supposedly their safest spaces, by their intimate partners or other family members. The stance of the government against femicide, the policy of impunity, the deepening of inequality, the failure to implement the laws protecting women, and Turkey’s withdrawal from the Istanbul Convention increase violence against women day by day. In the country, women face death because they want to make decisions about their lives. The deepening economic crisis in the country also pushes women into a spiral of violence. While the number of killed women increases every day, the suspicious deaths of women are ignored. We spoke to socialist women and representatives of women's organizations about increasing violence against women and femicide in Turkey. Nurşen İnal, a member of the We Will Stop Femicide Platform, talked about the reality of femicide in Turkey.
Istanbul- At least 277 women were killed, 235 more died under suspicious circumstances in Turkey between March 2021 and March 2022, according to the report of the We Will Stop Femicide Platform (KCDP).
About 50% of these women were killed by their husbands; 125 women were killed by their husbands, 29 by their partners, 21 by their ex-husbands, 83 by their ex-partners, 12 by their fathers, 12 by their sons, seven by their brothers, 17 by their male relatives, 27 by men they knew, one by a man she didn’t know and the acquaintance degree of men killed eight women was not reported in the press.
Most women were killed in their homes
“187 women were killed in their homes, 33 women on the streets, 9 in deserted areas, 22 in fields, 9 in cars, 2 in public parks, 11 at their workplaces, 4 at hotels, one in a hut, 2 while entering buildings, one in front of a school, one in a minibus, one in a factory, one in a public bathroom, one in a lawyer’s office, one in the parking lot, one in front of her house, one in front of a health care center, one at a restaurant and the places where 9 women were killed weren’t reported in the press,” the report of KCDP says.
How were women killed?
“Men killed 132 women with firearms, 94 with sharp objects such as knives and axes. Men battered 9 women to death. 3 women were burned to death, 2 were killed by being thrown from high places, 2 were run over by cars, 2 were killed with iron bars, one by being hit with a hammer, and one by being hit in the head with a stone. The methods of killing two women were not reported in the press.”
The figures don’t include the figures in March 2022, which has not yet been announced.
“The number of suspicious deaths of women is almost the same as the number of femicides”
Recalling that women are killed in Turkey every day, Nurşen İnal, a member of the We Will Stop Femicide Platform, underlined that women are killed by men for making decisions about their lives. “Perpetrators, who know that they cannot legitimize femicide and that no comprehensive investigations will be carried out, try to show femicides as suspicious deaths. They claim that women committed suicide or they killed women accidentally. Due to the lack of comprehensive investigations, most femicide cases are recorded as suspicious deaths. The number of suspicious deaths of women is almost the same as the number of femicides. Sometimes, the number of suspicious deaths is more than the number of femicides,” she said.
Emphasizing that economic crises hit women harder due to gender inequality, Nurşen İnal said that women are first fired and forced to work in low-paid and insecure jobs. “12 million women (In Turkey) do indoor housework but they are not included in the unemployed data because they are seen as housewives. While they struggle against poverty, they also struggle against violence. Despite everything, thousands of women will take to the streets to celebrate Women’s Day in order to live equally and freely.”
“How can women feel safe while perpetrators go unpunished?”
“Although at least three women are killed in Turkey every day, the AKP-Palace government withdrew from the Istanbul Convention, protecting women. Women pay the price of their decision with their lives. The AKP wants to create uneducated women to obey, don’t question anything in accordance with political Islam. The policy of impunity releases the perpetrators of violence from prison. How can women feel safe while perpetrators go unpunished? We called on women to take to the streets against the economic crisis, male-state violence, harassment, and mobbing. Women will not pay the bill of the crisis, women will not get used to poverty,” Sevgi Özlem, Head of Women's Office of the Workers' Party of Turkey (TİP), told NuJINHA.
“AKP tells women 'your place is either home or grave'”
Recalling that 278 women have been killed by men since March 2021, Çiçek Otlu, spokesperson of the Socialist Women Assemblies (SKM), said, “These figures show male violence has increased. One of the reasons why violence against women is increasing is the policy of impunity. By withdrawing from the Istanbul Convention, the AKP regime actually gave a message to women. It tells women ‘your place is either home or grave’. For this reason, women should struggle together to prevent violence against women and stop femicides.”
“Domestic violence will increase”
Çiçek Otlu warned that the economic crisis, apart from the political crisis of the AKP regime in the upcoming period, will also cause women to be subjected to more violence. “The poverty, unemployment, and high cost of living will increase domestic violence. But we will keep taking to the streets to protest femicide, violence against women, and the policy of impunity,” she said.
“We have gone through a period in which violence against women becomes brutal”
“We have gone through a period in which violence against women becomes brutal,” Selma Gürkan, Deputy Chairperson of the Labor Party (EMEP), said that the burden of the economic crisis and pandemic is on the shoulders of the people, mostly of women. “Our country is located in a region where wars and conflicts never end. We are affected by the wars and conflicts in North Africa and the Middle East. These days, Russia has tried to invade Ukraine. Therefore, we will demand gender equality, the end of violence, and peace all over the world on International Women’s Day. We believe that we will win a freer and more democratic country through struggle in the coming period. We call on all women to struggle more for an equal and free life without wars and conflicts.”